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Comcast Center

Posted on Monday, May 5, 2014
Philadelphia's tallest building has plenty to see; including a video display that needs to be seen to be believed.
 
The Comcast Center
 
The History
For nearly a century, Philadelphia’s City Hall stood as the city's tallest building.  Construction began on City Hall, a Second Empire masterpiece, in 1871 and it stood as the tallest building in Philadelphia until 1987, when that distinction was passed on to the newly completed One Liberty Place. One Liberty Place towered over City Hall at a staggering 945 feet compared to City Hall’s 548 feet.   While One Liberty Place is much taller than City Hall, it spent far less time atop Philadelphia’s skyline.  Less than 15 years after One Liberty Place’s completion, plans were already coming together to build an even taller building in Philadelphia.  That building would eventually become the Comcast Center. Designed by Robert A. M. Stern, the Comcast Center has been Philadelphia’s tallest building since its completion in 2007 and stands 975 feet tall. 
 
What to See
While the Comcast Center rises far into the sky, what many consider its most impressive feature sits right at ground level.  In the main lobby of the Comcast Center, the Comcast Experience HD Video Wall, covers the entire north wall of the lobby. The Comcast Experience HD Video Wall is an enormous high-definition LED video screen that is made up of over 10 million pixels!
 
Many large video screens such as those seen at sports stadiums have very low pixel density, causing the screens to look very pixelated up close.  The Comcast Experience HD Video Wall however does not suffer from this limitation; in fact, the wall is actually five times the resolution of a hi-definition TV.  At 83.5 feet wide and 25.4 feet high, the screen is the largest of its kind in the entire world.  The result is a spectacular lifelike video screen that is capable of producing images that seem to be indistinguishable from real life.  
 
The Comcast Experience HD Video Wall
 
The Comcast Center is also home to the Market & Shops at Comcast Center.  There are a number of stores within Comcast Center as well as some dining options.  Philadelphia institutions Di Bruno Bros. and Termini Brothers Bakery are some of the highlights of the market.  Also don’t worry, if you’re hunting for a Philly Cheesesteak, you can also find that at the Market & Shops at Comcast Center.
 
Insider Tips
While the video wall is open year-round, a great time to see the Comcast Experience HD Video Wall is during the holidays.  From Thanksgiving through New Year’s Day, the Comcast Holiday Spectacular is displayed on the video wall.  The incredible 15 minute viewing experience must be seen to be believed and is shown at the top of every hour.  Best of all, like all presentations on the Comcast Experience HD Video Wall, the Holiday Spectacular is free!
 
How to Get There
Located at 17th Street and John F Kennedy Boulevard, the Comcast Center is just about 1 mile away from the meeting place of The Constitutional Walking Tour at the National Constitution Center at 6th and Arch Streets. Although a bit of a hike, those who enjoy walking could head straight down Arch Street and reach the Comcast Center within half an hour.
 
The Comcast Center is also one of the favorite stops for groups to stop at along The Constitutional Bus Tour of Philadelphia.
 
The Comcast Center is easily reached by public transportation as it is directly connected to the concourse of Septa’s Suburban Station (regional rail).  The Comcast Center is also just blocks away from stops on Philadelphia’s two main subway lines, the Market-Frankford Line (15th Street Station) and the Broad Street Line (City Hall Station).
 
While street parking is limited in the area, there are a number of garages and parking lots in the area to cater to those who wish to drive.
 
Hours
Mon-Fri: 8:00am – 7:00pm
Sat:         8:00am – 5:00pm
Sun:        Closed
(Note: these hours are subject to change, and you may want to contact Comcast Center to confirm)
 
Additional Information
1701 John F. Kennedy Boulevard
Philadelphia, PA 19103
215.496.1810
 
 
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